Id POEMS INSPIRED BY CERTAIN PICTURES AT THE ART TREASURES EXHIBITION, MANOHESTEB, t BY TENNYSON LONGFELLOW SMITH, OF CRIPPLEaATE WITHIN, EDITED BY HIS FRIEND, THE AUTHOR OF "THORNS & THISTLES. " ILLUSTRATED BY THE HON. BOTIBOL BAREACRES; AND WITH PROFOUND ADMIRATION AND AWE, TO THAT GREATEST OF MODERN POETS, PHILOSOPHERS, ARTISTS, ART-CRITICS, AND AUTHORS, THE IMMORTAL BUSKIN. MANCHESTER : SOLD AT THE BOOK-STALL OF THE EXHIBITION, AND BY ALL RESPECTABLE BOOKSELLERS. POEMS. BY HOLMAN HUNT. Now, really, Mr. Holman Hunt, this can't be called correct, And in your more developed stage what are we to expect ? Some things, there are, you know, hon ton don't recognise at all, I'm really quite surprised that you should paint a what-d'ye-call ! "Madam; the painter do not blame with too severe a tongue, (The creature from the canvas speaks) I'm neither fair nor young. And Mr. Hunt, with moral aim, would frighten every gent From taking up with such as me, on wickedness when bent. My hollow cheeks, my starting eyes, my red dishevelled hair, Should horror strike in those bad men who've known what once they were ; Whilst Frederic, grinning by my side, a swell, a fool, a muff. To sicken all right-minded girls is surely quite enough. "I own my windows don't, in fact, look on the church-yard sod. But Mr. H.= would have it so, being obstinate and odd. 'Twould give such force, he said — was full of meaning, dark and sad ; And really, as he's managed it, it doesn't look so bad ! A 2 4 As for tlie cat, I must observe, my Lulu, pretty pet, Though often eyeing Dickey s cage, has never harmed it yet ; Still, it's a good idea; and so's the scarf around me thrown ; Its colours bright serve well to show how pallid I am grown. " Vve lived and loved (some years ago) in halls of dazzling light. And heard my lovers serenade oft in the stilly night ; But, love not, for the thing you love may die, or will not last ; And if there is one flower that fades, 'tis the memory of the past ! * ^' So, Madam, please to moderate the rancour of your tongue ; For, as I have observed before, I'm neither fair nor young. Yet let me hope the whole effect, — my features wan and pale, At least may point a moral, if they can't adorn a tale." * The beautiful and ingenious manner in which the burdens of these popular and truly soul-inspired poems are introduced by Mr. T. L. S. deserves especial notice. Observe, also, the wide extent of his reading in our poeticliterature, evidenced in the sudden refer- ence to an old and simple melo-drama at the opening of the succeeding verse, and to read- lug of a still more serious and recondite nature in the last line of the same stanza. — Ed. BY H. HOLMAN HUNT. Oh ! jolly young countryvolk be we, Full o' life, au blood, an jollity ; If I do whack Poll, why Poll do whack me, Darn humbug, zez I. I do zgorn your lord and your parsing too, With their pasty chops and their hullabaloo, For I lies on the grass, and hadn't nuthun to do, — Poll minds the zheep. Whilst Mr. Hunt my fiziog draws, An told me as how h' wuz quite surpraws T'zee zo much blood in any chap's jaws, And guv me a guinea. Not as I'm gwoing to tell to yew Whot with that guinea I means for to dew ; But darn'd if I don't have a spree or tew At the Pig and Whistle. And Poll, thof her have that fancy lamb As I can't abide, shall have a cram, And zo, zur, its much obleeged I am. ( Sotto voce,) Bain't her a zoft. Poll ? * * My friend, T. L. S., gives proof, in this little poem, of that judgment, refinement, and exquisite taste which can touch on the coarsest subject and yet escape the accusation of grossness. A sweet sound is drawn from a rude i-ural reed ; and his originahty — his sense of the appropriate — is evinced in the pecuhar and difficult idiom he has chosen for this effort of his genius, viz., that of Somersetshire, noted for its red-cheeked clowns and green apples. N.B. — In the racy dialect of the county it is pronounced Zoommurzshutzhyer. We remark, also, the last lingering glimmer of a long lost and deeply regretted age of chivalry and romance, in the fact that all things are indiscrimi- nately known as *' her" in this county. BY HOLMAN HUNT. Sang in times which now are olden,* Fast by Avon's flowing stream, Many a legend, weird and golden — Things which are not what they seem.f Shakspere of the wide evangel. Him of Godlike soul profound ; Of all poets chief archangel; And amongst them this is found : — | Sir Proteus and Sir Valentine Loved two ladies passing well ; One, of Milan's princely line ; The other, a Verona belle. 'T would take a long time to explain All the windings of the plot ; How well our Shakspeare lays the train, — Who did wrong and who did not. Till within a bosky § wood, All the four are met at last ; * t The affectionate reverence displayed by T. L. S. in these touching and gentle refer- ences to the most beautiful leaves in the laurel crown of his Transatlantic godfather, must affect every feeling heart with pleasure. !(. The bold transition from the vivid description of Shakspere to the subject in hand, forms, perhaps, one of the most striking instances on record of how genius can deal with the figure, ** Aposiopesis." § That the study of T. L. S. has not been confined to our modem warblers is proved by this Miltonian phrase. We may add that Milton no doubt introduced the sweet expression from Italy, in which language it is an interesting fact that *• bosco" means a wood or forest The charge of vulgarism has been brought against our author for using this word, but is it not evident that this particular "bosky" does not apply to a gross excess in strong drinks ; for, although many a stick may get tipsj', who ever heard of a wood being drunk ? The charge is preposterous. 7 Each one in a different mood, Sir Protens on his knee, aghast ! Above him, brave Sir Valentine, Armour-clad, and knocked of knee, Looking mighty proud and fine. Has stept out from behind a tree. Lady Sylvia kneels beside him — Daughter of proud Milan's line ; For Proteus, she cannot abide him, But loves her own dear Valentine. * As for Proteus, recreant knight, Well may he hang down his head, And hold his neck with grip so tight, A crick in which near strikes him dead. Behaving thus so very sadly Unto Sylvia and his friend. And to Julia just as badly — She who loves him to the end ! Julia rests against a tree, Disguised like a youthful page ; And is not sorry thus to see Things arrive at such a stage. So she proves that she is Julia, And, indeed, no page at all ; Proteus, this was done to fool ye ; You must feel uncommon small ! Uncommon small ! of course he does ; So, after being duly harried. * With the conscious sense of truly powerful genius, my friend does not shrink from impressing into the service of his Muse the most popular expressions of our natiojj^l poetry ; and this easy simplicity brings to our remembrance, in this particular insta^ip^ one of the most charming and palpitating days of the year, and an old, old custom, happily not yet trodden out of England by the iron hoof of steam. 8 Each gives each a loving kiss, And all four are shortly married. Hunt, with great power of imitation, Hath limned the poet^s pleasant story ; Still, if we ask some explanation, Be not offended, we implore ye. Why, then, is Sylvia on her knees ? And Proteus, too, on one knee slid ? * And why such very little trees Behind which Valentine was hid ? And why are both the ladies fair ? Why's Proteus like a Sussex clod ? Why have they all such curious hair ? Why 's Julia's figure made so odd ? But, ask no more what may be meant ; Kemember, life is but a dream ; He doubtless wish'd to represent Things which are not what they seem. * For the justice of this pungent criticism the intelligent reader is referred to any edition of that great dramatist known by our brethren across the Channel as the "Divine Williams." BY HOLMAN HUNT. " What^s the matter, what's the matter ? * Have you pains in yonr inside ? Why do your teeth thus loudly clatter ? Tell the worst that may betide. " Why's your body thus distorted ? What's the matter with your heel ? Pray, by me, now, be exhorted — Tell me what it is you feel, " Is it what I just have told you ? Claudio, do not fear to fall, For with both hands thus I hold you Fast and tight against the wall. Life, I know, is very pleasant ; Death a very dubious riddle ; Yet, remember, you're no peasant, But part your kair straight down the middle, " Yes, your hair is nobly parted, And you wear a noble's dress ; So, prithee, don't be chicken-hearted — To such weakness don't confess. * We believe that a poem by the late amiable but deluded Wordsworth commences somewhat in this style ; but no charge of plagiarism should or could be justly brought against my dear friend on this account, since the opening expression is one of that class which may naturally occur to all poets of genius anyway ''hors de ligne." 10 ^' Think what life is without honor ; Don't be looking at your feet ; Boldly, bravely, look upon her — Death I mean — and think it sweet,'' Thus spake fair, young Isabella To her brother — soon to die, Because he's been a gay young fellah,* And broke the laws most flagrantly. Measure for Measure is the play ; The which, if you have never read, Its perusal, any day. Will prove how vice is punished. But pray don't think there's any reason Why thus the picture we explain ; The subject you at once would seize on. And own 'tis Shakspeare o'er again. For is not Claudio inly writhing. Distraught with shame and puling fear, With basest thoughts still vainly striving, And trying to squeeze out a tear ? Whilst she, the maiden, chaste and proud, Eegards him with superb disdain, As, with indignant words and loud, She bids him be a man again. And Hunt, of genius most Titanic, A very Shakspeare of the brush, In each spectator's soul strikes panic. And makes all coward spirits blush. * We own we are doubtful how far a poet— even such a poet as T. L. S.— is justified in altering the proper spelling of the most tritial word in our beloved and nervous language. We would only remark that in the best society " fellow" is always pronounced fellah. In that society T. L. S. was born, was nurtured, and has always moved as one of its most distinguished ornaments. Need we say more ? 11 Thank heaven ! we live in glorious days ; Poor Kaffaelle seems a blundering child Beside our Hunts and our Millais, Whilst Kembrandt's meaningless and wild. These soul-less infants of the past, With all their sensual, pagan crew, Could they re-live, would stand aghast At sight of what our youths can do. BY C. A. COLLINS. Gee AT is the power of the painter, wonderful garden of green- ness, And sweet is the sense of seclusion, though millions of lilies and roses Here twine and spring up and are tangled — at least, if not tangled, they might be, Were it not that the hand of the gardener hath carefully grouped all their beauties. Verdant the grass which, beneath thee, looks like a carpet of green baize ; Verdant the bushes and berries, springing up in most excellent order ; Verdant the wall at the back, too, with many a yearns growth of something ; * And verdant thy thoughts, oh, young spirit, which, shrouded beneath that grey habit, (Straight in a line doth it fall each side of thy delicate figure), Holdest in one of thy hands, so tiny and fragile and bony. Passion's bright flower of the south, mystical, bursting with meaning. And if you look up to the sky, or the top of the brick wall beneath it; * My friend, with that honesty of soul which characterises him, disdains to particu- larise where he is uncertain, — to bounce, as it is vulgarly termed, when he is ignorant. No, he owns his ignorance with a noble candour. We cannot assist the reader ourselves as to the name of the plant, but it is not ivy, as we have heard stated. 13 Or if you should pitch on the "something," or fall on the leaves and the flowers, Or let your thoughts lie on the grass, or tumble down into the water, Or fasten upon the poor nun, who looks so unusually meagre, You feel all the power of the artist — wonderful power of the artist — Who, with nothing but colour and brushes, can fill all your being with sadness, Such as the pretty plants feel when they shiver and sigh at the twilight. So we stagger awe-stricken away, with a heavy, a tear-bur- dened bosom. For we see that a something too holy, too lovely for mere human beings. Is hidden beneath that grey robe, and we totter on tremblingly forward. Autumn 3Lea&e0* BY MILLAIS. Grandly great, oli painter of the bright hues dying, Art thou ; and very full of meaning is the sighing Beauty of thy "autumn. leaves,'' which now, not dancing On 4^11 Novembrial boughs, through hoar frost glancing, But here, all speckled^ dank, plague-spotted, rotten, Into a festering mass of loathsome filth are gotten, Liker damp sculls within a sepulchre ; the whilst, around. Four human spirits stand upon the ground. Fair children they, well versed in life's sad mystery, With eight great eyes explain the history,* Whilst redolent of thought, unto the thinking mind, The last faint glow of sunset sweeps across behind. * It is true that the eight eyes are not all fixed on the spectator, and, as it were, speaking words of deep and melancholy import to him. The explanation of the sad tale symbolised in this painting is, however, no less made clear to us by the eyes of the indus- trious domestic and of the sweet and innocent little prattler to the right, who sees nothing more before her — like many an uneducated child of longer growth — than a heap of dirty damp leaves. BY WYNDAS. BuRD Helen had a radiant face When dancing on the green ; A prettier girl at ball or race, Kegatta, fair, or steeple -chase, Was surely never seen. But ah ! no sun but has its speck, No sky but has its cloud ; My milk-white horse has got a fleck,* And accidents we little reck May happen in a crowd. Sure never was a bird so gay — So strong upon the wing ; Yet rainy proved her summer day, And she would neither sport nor play, Nor pretty ditties sing. The reason why, was (so I 'm told), A little heart affair ; — She met a Templar brave and bold, Who turned out cruel, false, and cold. And for her did not care. So, reckless of his good renown, He mounted on his horse. And said he should go back to town ; On which, she went and changed her gown, And followed him, of course. * It is useless seeking to conceal what will be clear to every observant reader — that my friend was of a sporting turn ; and, indeed, a thorough man of the world, alas ! 16 He rode, and lie rode, and he rode, and he rode,* As swift as any stag ; But she ran after, nimble -toed, Through hedge and ditch, through slush and slode, -j- As fast as legs could wag. So on they coursed, till close of day. When they came to a common drear, All jagged with flints — white, blue, and grey, — And furze and brambles, which hurt, they say, When your feet are almost bare. And after that was a river deep — Might frighten e'en Leander ; J Still to his side the Burd did keep, Swearing that in the stream she 'd leap. Like Caesar or Alexander. § But, ah ! this false, this cruel knight Was not a whit dismayed ; He grinn'd, and said, this will stop your flight, So, Madam, I wish you a very good night. I wish I had him flay'd ! If I could gain so true a love. How happy should I be ! Alas, no star that shines above. And twinkles bright in heaven's alcove. Can farther be from me. * It may occur to some that there is a certain similarity between this truly graphic line and one in the celebrated and popular poem of *' Lord Bateman," but I have the best authority for stating that my beloved friend never read that somewhat coarse eiTusion. j- In vain will the philologistic reader turn to Johnson and others for this word. It is a purely old Anglo-Saxon expression, with which T. L. S. has been recently favoured through the medium of the departed and lamented spirit of Alfred the Great. :j: And, let me add, even impulsive, unhappy Byron, § This allusion serves to prove that my honoured friend was as familiar with the history of a long-past age as with the more pleasing writers of our own times. 17 And now, to tell you all the rest, — How poor Burd Helen fared, Or what befel that knight so bad. Or how they both went raving mad, — I'm really not prepared. But in a ballad, quaint and old, You '11 find it sweetly written, And if you are, what I make bold To think you are , you '11 spend your gold And buy it, like a Briton. * Thine, Wyndas, is a glorious name, New added to the list Of England's chosen imps of fame. Who put all painters else to shame, Wherever they exist. So wonderfully do you know How metal's laid in loads, The nation (gratitude to show), Should constitute you, here below, Surveyor of our roads ! f * This smacks, indeed, of the true old English spirit ; does it not ? t Palmam qui meruit ferat I B Pre * EaffaelUtte CDfj0 t«:jj. Air : — *' The One-Horse Chaise." Oh, we live in wretched days, there are few whom we can praise, Save the happy band of brothers who *Tre-Ea£faelleite" are called ; All the rest will come to grief, with no hope of relief, And by our prophet, Buskin, will be regularly mauled. Still no more will we say, of the painters of to-day. Who, if they only join our ranks, may yet perhaps be saved ; But for Eaffaelle and his crew, we will pink them through and through, And Buskin's name in blood upon their souls shall be engraved. That Eaffaelle was a fool, like all others of his school. Without sentiment or soul, — a sensual heathen brute ; But although he has a name, yet Buskin soon his fame Shall scratch and tear to tatters, and trample under foot. As for wretched Buonarotti, so contorted, coarse, and dotty, Such a humbug diabolical has never yet been known ; An emissary from Hades, from whom gentlemen and ladies Should turn in proper horror, and entirely disown ! There's that satyr, J. Eomano ; that immoral Tiziano ; Giorgione, Tintoretto, Guido, — demons, one and all, Whom we loathe, abhor, detest; and we swear to take no rest Till we dance upon their monuments, both great and small. Oh, Eembrandt 's simply bosh ; and Euben 's actual slosh ; And those who dare say otherwise are fools, and dogs, and slaves. Vandyke, Ostade, and Snyders, with the squad of Dutch out- siders. Were a set of heartless, pagan, drunken, muddle-headed knaves. 19 As for poor old Claude Lorraine, Buskin makes it very plain That a muff more unartistic we couldn't well conceive ; Whilst dull Salvator Rosa is a " maladetta cosa," And they and all who follow them are doomed without reprieve. The Poussins and Le Brun, we will show you very soon, Were nothing more than pagans of the deepest, blackest dye, In fact, throughout the century, to take an oath we venture, ye -Will find no Christian sentiment, or anything that's high. And every single Spaniard is ridiculously mannered ; Velasques and Murillio, with Zurbaran as well ; Old Cano and El Greco, would a pretty party make, oh ! In a place that mayn't be mentioned, as I need not tell. In that place they all have got, let us hope, a fiery lot, For the dark artistic crimes which, they committed here on earth, Whilst we shout with might and main, till the heavens vibrate again. That High Art in Great Britain has at last been brought to birth. And Buskin swears that now, if your knee you do not bow. And humbly, to the Genius of this Infant so divine, He will give you such a slashing, — such a mashing, crashing, thrashing. As befits a set of donkeys, or a herd of filthy swine. So, you see, we must be right ; and, having put you in a fright. Go, burn your stupid ancient daubs, and come to us to school ; Then perhaps you may, some day, find out the proper way To look on Art and Nature, and cease to be a fool.